Local Lamb Lessons


Course: February 1, 2018,  Site Visit: February 15, 2018

Outline – Flock Management & Dairy Products

Breeds (Presenter, Nikola Kochendoerfer)

Management strategies


Challenges for marketing and sales

Economic analysis


Creamery (Presenter, Lewis Fox)

Overview of products

Regulatory environment

Planning with goals in mind

By the numbers

Marketing and selling

Presenter: Nikola Kochendoerfer

Department of Animal Science, Cornell University


Niko Kochendoerfer received her undergraduate degree in Animal Science and Agricultural Management at Anhalt University in Bernburg, Germany, 2012. She has experience managing large scale sheep flocks in Germany, and worked as whole farm consultant in the dairy industry. Currently she is earning her Master's Degree in Animal Science at Cornell University, working with Dr. Michael Thonney.  Her research focus is on dairy sheep management and nutrition.

Presenter: Lewis Fox

Department of Animal Science, Cornell University


Lewis Fox grew up in Vermont on his family’s 30-cow organic grazing dairy. His family continues to milk cows now, and sells milk to Organic Valley, a cooperative based in Wisconsin. He attended Vermont Technical College and majored in Diversified Agruculture. In his junior year he decided to move to New York and transfer into Cornell University. At Cornell he majored in Animal Science and graduated with honors in 2014.

After graduation, Lewis moved to Western New York and worked as a parlor manager and then farm manager on Lakeshore Dairy, a 2000-head cow dairy near Lake Ontario owned by the Lamb family.

In early 2016, Lewis accepted an offer by one of his former Cornell professors to manage a sheep and goat dairy he was building in the Finger Lakes.  Shepherd’s Way is an innovative dairy for this region. It is an integrated sheep and goat dairy with roughly 2000 sheep and 2200 goats. The business sells milk to artisanal cheese producers in NY, and is a sister business to its own creamery – Old Chatham Sheepherding Creamery in the Hudson Valley. Lewis moved to Old

Chatham earlier this year is the General Manager of the operation.

Course Materials

Presentation - Dairy Sheep Production (pdf)

Presentation - Processing & Marketing of Sheep Milk Products (pdf)


Classroom Presentation

Old Chatham Sheepherding Co. Site Visit Video

Funding for HVADC’s Local Lamb Lessons made possible with a 

grant from the National Sheep Industry Improvement Center